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Thread: Brake "Feel" Question

  1. #11
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    Doesn't this uneven feeling seem odd? To me, I've only ever felt this heavy before in a previous car of mine, a 1973 Mustang.

    When I inspected my brake reservoir, I noticed that the fluid was dirty. As of this afternoon, I flushed about a quart and a half through it (I went with DOT4) and here are some pictures of the before and after. The fluid in the system still isn't clear and so I think I'm going to flush it again but this time with a power brake bleeder from Motive. Has anyone else tried flushing/bleeding their brakes to see if it helps? My experience is that brake travel is reduced a bit, the brakes engage more quickly, and the buzzing feeling is much less noticeable. I find it interesting that the owner's manual does not mention anything about brake service. Are you guys flushing your systems every other year?

  2. #12
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    Before and after of the brake fluid

    Here are the pictures of the fluid before and after the flush.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by rkw View Post
    I've noticed that if I get in the car and immediately start driving, the first couple of times the braking will be very sensitive and grabby. If I step on the brakes a couple of times before starting out (until I hear the buzzing of the brake pump), then the brakes feel normal. I think it is an issue of the hydraulics not always being primed.
    We shouldn't have to prime our brakes for our cars prior to driving them. If this is the case, there is likely a design flaw or a system error. The BMW i3 has excellent brakes and it has a similar system. Has anyone tried bringing their car in to a service center to check this out?

  4. #14
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    I had the same issue with my 2016 500e with only 6200 miles. One of the unique things about brakes on evs with regen is that the brakes are very rarely used and only at slow speeds so rust, moisture, crud can build up if you live near the ocean or humid areas.

    One thing prius owners have had to do is to perform a higher speed braking procedure in nuetral.

    This cleans brake rotors and pad surfaces of built up crud and helps pads wear more uniformily.

    I did this and it really helps.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by grogue View Post
    I had the same issue with my 2016 500e with only 6200 miles. One of the unique things about brakes on evs with regen is that the brakes are very rarely used and only at slow speeds so rust, moisture, crud can build up if you live near the ocean or humid areas.

    One thing prius owners have had to do is to perform a higher speed braking procedure in nuetral.

    This cleans brake rotors and pad surfaces of built up crud and helps pads wear more uniformily.

    I did this and it really helps.
    So you noticed a difference in the way the brakes felt once you went through this procedure?

  6. #16
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    The brake "feel" on the 500e is pretty terrible in my opinion. When regen and friction brakes are blended because regen is limited (ie nearly full battery) they did a fantastic job. When transitioning from regen to friction brakes during normal stopping, which happens about 5mph and down, the friction brakes are super grabby. Worse than a Prius grabby in my opinion, and I've owned four Prii. It's not bad and you get used to it after a while.

    I would say the overall effort needed is little but it has a firm pedal feel. My other vehicle is a 2007 Toyota Tacoma and I find myself having to re-train my brain to push a little more when I get in to it after a long period of driving the Fiat only.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ricksuiter View Post
    The brake "feel" on the 500e is pretty terrible in my opinion. When regen and friction brakes are blended because regen is limited (ie nearly full battery) they did a fantastic job. When transitioning from regen to friction brakes during normal stopping, which happens about 5mph and down, the friction brakes are super grabby. Worse than a Prius grabby in my opinion, and I've owned four Prii. It's not bad and you get used to it after a while.

    I would say the overall effort needed is little but it has a firm pedal feel. My other vehicle is a 2007 Toyota Tacoma and I find myself having to re-train my brain to push a little more when I get in to it after a long period of driving the Fiat only.

    Thansk so for your detailed account - this is super helpful.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by robus View Post
    It's definitely taking some adjustment for me. Occasionally the car comes to more abrupt stop than I like, but mostly I think it's a matter of adjusting to the car. (i frequently have similar trouble with rentals)

    i'll update if I feel like I can't reliably dial it in.
    The car will almost always stop more abruptly when the brakes are wet. I don't think there's anything you can do to really adjust to this behavior - you just have to expect it and live with it.

    Tesla solves this problem by controlling regen with the accelerator and keeping the brake pedal controlling only the friction brakes (no blending like a 500e or a Toyota hybrid).
    2013 Fiat 500e

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by FFB500 View Post
    ... I noticed that the fluid was dirty...
    I've pointed this out before. The design of the brake booster causes moisture to be drawn into the fluid.

    -J
    2013 500e
    2012 Passat TDI, 2004 Touareg V10 TDI, 1999.5 Jetta TDI, 1991 350SDL

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